This year, the local middle school sent us all a letter informing us the great news that all 7th and 8th grade students were being given a laptop to love, honor and cherish and really contribute to their education. Oh, and I get to be financially responsible for it. My immediate reaction was, skip the computer, give every kid a goat, chicken and a tomato plant! That is an idea I can get behind. Instead of giving them access to be lazier and spend more time in front of a screen than they already do, instead of further hindering physical social interaction, let's teach kids to spend their free time working! We are going to find that we turn high school graduates out with great texting skills and even better googling skills, and no idea at all how to function without means of electronic gadget.
I am so old fashioned, I guess, I just don't see the point. Paper, pencil, goat. That is an education (as well as an exaggeration). We are raising our kids to be contributing members of society and have skills necessary to be self sufficient. Kids need chores and a part in feeling like a contributing member of the family. And kids need to play! Away from the screen, outside in the dirt and sunshine, and bugs. When we raise kids with no responsibility, we get irresponsible adults...like the roommate I had in college who had never held a broom.
It is never to young to start. In fact, the little ones like it the most.
I find that my elementary kids think chores are just not fair. But they do them cheerfully (usually) all the same.
My middle school aged kids know better than to whine about it. Plus they are old enough to see how it makes them a contributing member of the family.
Plus, they make it as fun as they can:
I love the quote I read on Facebook yesterday:
All I want is a log cabin in the middle of nowhere. And wifi.I love our modern age. I love computers and Internet at the ease of access to learning. I love that a machine washes and dries my clothes and dishes. A knob turns on the heat for the oven or stove. Leftovers can be preserved and rewarmed. A faucet brings water strait to my kitchen sink. My hope is that amidst all the trappings of modern technology, we do not lose interpersonal relationships. We do not downplay the importance of cottage skills. And that we work harder than ever to pass down to the next generation the importance of being a contributing member of a social society. If they can milk a goat and skin a rabbit, well, all the better.
How do you help your kids find the value of work? I would love to hear your ideas.
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